Greentree puts stationery firm on the move
ACME’s business system couldn’t handle a changing business environment; making changes was a slow, expensive process.
Greentree integrates sales and financial data, automates manual processes, and delivers real-time customer information and business intelligence.
Time-consuming processes have been eliminated, orders and service jobs can be tracked instantly, invoicing can be tailored to a customer’s needs, and ACME now has the flexibility to handle future business demands.
THE FULL STORY
“With our previous system there were lots of daily tasks that various people would have to do. They might take only 15-20 minutes each, but that time adds up to hours over a month. With Greentree, so many of those tasks have just disappeared.”
Brent Stanton is the Finance Manager for ACME Supplies Ltd, which has been importing office products and hand tools for the stationery and hardware sectors for more than 40 years. Its customers include almost all businesses that are involved in reselling/retailing stationery and hardware, including all the major purchasing groups and retail chains.
“We’re a seller of quality, long-standing brands,” he says. “Because those brands have been around for a long time, people know them and their reliability. We back up those products with quality customer service.”
From its warehouses in Auckland and Havelock North, ACME services hundreds of customers nationwide. Its warehouses hold more than 7,000 inventory items and process an average of 5,000 orders a month. Efficiency and reliability are the keys to holding its competitive edge; it has to adapt rapidly to changing customer demands.
The need for a more flexible business system that could handle future needs led ACME to call in Greentree and partner Verde Group.
$100,000? NO, THANKS
ACME had been using one system for sales and stock management, with a separate system handling financials.
“Any changes we wanted to make were very time-consuming and expensive,” Brent says. “Often we’d just make do because the cost of making changes was too high.”
The crunch came when ACME wanted system upgrades to equip itself for e-commerce. The price quoted was over $100,000. A new system was definitely the better option. Greentree was mentioned by another company, and that rang a bell – a consultant from Verde Group had been calling occasionally to see how ACME’s current system was performing. This time, they were ready to talk.
“Greentree had the forward thinking that we were looking for,” Brent says. “The size and diversity of its customer base appealed to us, as well as the quality of the product.
“Our requirements were simple: we wanted a sales order system, inventory, financials, and the capability for web integration. Greentree had just about everything we needed, straight out of the box.”
ACME also wanted its new system to cause as little disruption as possible.
“It was easy to make Greentree fit with minor tweaks,” says Brent. “Verde said it could be done, and they made it happen. The transition was very good.
“Verde’s level of knowledge is incredible; at no point did we wonder whether we’d made the right decision. We told them what we wanted and they delivered it. I’d give them 10 out of 10.”
Brent Stanton, Finance Manager
CUSTOMERS BETTER SERVED
The difference that Greentree makes is being felt throughout the business. Emailing of monthly statements has reduced a day-long task to an hour, and customers who want invoices weekly, fortnightly or even daily can be accommodated easily. An invoice can be generated automatically as an order is completed.
“From a customer service point of view we’re now capturing courier ticket numbers, which is a big plus,” Brent says. “With a glance at Greentree’s Workflow screen we can tell the customer the status of their order straight away.”
Workflow has delivered other benefits too.
““It’s a great tool. We can see what sales orders need to be picked and dispatched at any time. It takes the guesswork out of what’s outstanding or what extra resources are needed to fill the orders for the day.”
ACME’s workshop carries out repairs on equipment from customers nationwide. Workflow enables similar real-time tracking of repairs.
GEARED FOR FUTURE CHANGE
Greentree IQ*has reduced Brent’s monthly reporting tasks from two days to less than half a day. ACME’s on-the-road sales reps can also get the latest customer sales data before making a call.
With Greentree, ACME staff can alter the wording or layout of a form themselves, at no cost.
ACME plans to grow by acquiring new brands to add to its portfolio of products. Greentree makes adding to that products database a simple task.
“Our previous system was at a dead end,” Brent concludes. “Now we know that when we want to make any changes to our business, Greentree will be able to accommodate them.”
ABOUT ACME SUPPLIES LIMITED
ACME Supplies Limited is the exclusive New Zealand importer and distributor of major international brands of quality office products and hand tools. ACME is named after the Greek word akmç, which means the highest point (or peak). “Striving for the peak of excellence and integrity in all that we do” underpins the business philosophy of ACME.
For more information visit www.acme.co.nz.